Library Dissertation Showcase

Britain and India – colonial legacies, contemporary narratives: exploring the colonial experience in India, its impact on contemporary Britain and India and its significance to the present-day and future of Anglo-Indian relations

  • Year of Publication:
  • 2022

This dissertation examines the nature of the contemporary relationship between The Republic of India and Britain and how this relationship is informed by and framed within historical and socio-political narratives. The growing significance of this relationship is the result of a combination of the serious historical and cultural ties that the two nations share; as well as the mounting need for Britain to forge new political and economic ties following the cessation of Britain’s membership within the European Union. As this dissertation shall explore However, as Britain moves closer to India, an authentic and mature discussion concerning the impact and legacy of Britain’s imperial past in India in order to ensure that this new partnership can last and potentially flourish, must be included. For If the past is not acknowledged, without a sign of contrition, there cannot be trust and honesty on an international level and neither can there be time for grief, reflection or empathy on the national level.
A range of theories that underpin postcolonial thought, including Group Trauma Theory and the Incohesion Basic Assumption Group, shall be considered alongside a discussion of historical and contemporary events1 and politics within and between India and Britain. These theories frame the discussion and aid in understanding contemporary narratives contributing to the formulation of conclusions. In its conclusion, this dissertation asserts that by understanding contemporary narratives surrounding the teaching and impact of Anglo-Indian history, conclusions may be ascertained in order to provide an insight into future, shared, relations and what must necessarily change in order to achieve a positive outcome. With such changes can come a bountiful relationship, one which is mutually beneficial to India and Britain.

This dissertation was submitted in May 2022. As of the writing of this dissertation, the United Kingdom and the Republic of India are undertaking negotiations in order to establish a free trade agreement between their nations. These talks have not yet been concluded; subsequently, developments there upon fall outside the purview of this discussion.

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